Nov 172011

Since I was a child, black olives heralded the winter holiday season. My parents, siblings, and I would go to my Grandma and Grandpa’s for Thanksgiving and Christmas dinners. The best part of each meal was the tray of raw vegetables and pickles. Each item was nestled in it’s own little scooped out slot.

In the kitchen, my Grandmother would open a can of pitted black California ripe olives, drain them, then put about half the can in the tray. She knew better than put the whole can in. I had devised many clever ways of sneaking the olives before any one else could enjoy some too.

This Sunday, California’s Butte County Historical Society is celebrating the 100th year of the home of the woman responsible for those lovely and delicious black olives I crave, Mrs. Freda Ehmann. Mrs. Ehmann started the olive canning industry in 1898 in Oroville, California and is known as the Mother of the California Ripe Olive.

The program begins at 2:00 pm, this Sunday, November 20, 2011. The lectures and tour of the home will cover stories about the Ehmann family and the Revival/Craftsman style of the home.

The home is located at 1480 Lincoln Street, Oroville, California, and is normally open for tours from 11:00 am to 3:00 pm on Saturdays. The tours are given by Alberta Tracy, who acts the part of a maid employed by the Ehmanns. For more information, call 530-533-9418.

May the sun shine through your branches.